India, Maldives To Hold Joint Commission Meeting On Friday After Gap Of Over Four Years
India and Maldives will attempt to chart a new course of deeper cooperation in ties at a high-level meeting between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Maldivian counterpart Abdulla Shahid on Friday.
A vast range of issues will be discussed at the 6th Joint Commission Meeting which is taking place after a gap of over four years, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said.
Shahid arrived in New Delhi late Tuesday night on a four-day visit.
"The JCM, which is taking place after a gap of over four years will oversee and review the entire gamut of our vast and expanding bilateral relationship with Maldives and chart a way forward for further deepening our engagement," Kumar said.
Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale held "productive discussions" with Shahid on Wednesday focusing on further deepening bilateral ties.
Shahid is leading a 31-member delegation which comprised senior officials of all major ministries and departments of the Maldivian government.
"This is reflective of the breadth and scope of our partnership with Maldives which has gained significant momentum over the past one year under the leadership of President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih," Kumar said.
Last week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that as a close friend and maritime neighbour, India is committed to partnering with the Maldives for its development.
Modi paid a two-day visit to the Maldives in June, his first bilateral trip after his reelection for a second term.
He also visited the Maldives last November to attend President Solih's swearing-in ceremony.
The relations between India and the Maldives deteriorated after the then President Abdulla Yameen imposed emergency on Feb. 5 last year.
India had criticised his decision and asked his government to restore the credibility of the electoral and political process by releasing political prisoners. The emergency lasted 45 days
However, the ties improved after Solih became president defeating Yameen in the presidential polls.